Spotify and Google are teaming up to give users on Android smartphones more choice on how they pay for a Premium subscription to the music platform.
From later this year, you'll be able to choose for the payment to either go through Spotify's own system or Google Play Billing instead, according to the latest Spotify Blog Post. The change is expected to come to other big-name apps as well, though we’ve yet to hear specifics.
The initiative is being called ‘User Choice Billing’, and it will give you the option to choose between giving more to the creators of the apps you use or continuing to contribute to Google’s Play Store infrastructure.
But, which payment system is likely to be best for you?
Analysis: Which payment system will be better?
Giving people more choice is rarely a bad thing, but here it definitely feels like you’re being asked to weigh up two nearly identical options.
When Epic Games tried to circumvent Apple’s App Store and Google’s Play Store payments in Fortnite mobile, it attracted customers by charging less for in-game goodies than if they bought via the third-party. Unfortunately, we don’t expect this will be the case here, as it’s a Google-led initiative.
If Spotify Premium costs less through Spotify than through Google’s Play Store (or vice versa), then you’d have no reason to opt for the pricier option.
So, assuming both systems are equally expensive for the customer which is better? If you want to maximize the portion of your money going to Spotify, then most likely its own private system will be best.
But, for convenience, Google’s billing is likely to be your best option. As all of your subscription payment data is stored in one place, the next time that you get a new debit or credit card you won’t have to remember everywhere that it’s used – you just have to update your details once, and your subscriptions will all continue.
Additionally, it’ll be easier to keep an eye on the subscriptions that you have. It’s not hard to forget that you have recurring billing set up for an app you rarely use, so by storing all of your subscriptions in one location within Google Play, you’d be able to quickly scroll through and find out what you’re paying without having to decode your bank statements.
If the service spreads to other apps and services, it might also give you the option to pay for digital goods without having to give your card details to a platform that you aren’t familiar with.
However, as with all upcoming features, we’ll have to wait and see just how much of a time or money saver 'User Choice Billing' ends up being when it launches.
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